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Dr  James (Jim) SHIELDS Obituary
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Friday, 21 February 2020

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Preview Entry
Friday, 21 February 2020

Please don't submit copyrighted work; original poems, songs or prayers welcomed. Legacy.com reviews all Guest Book entries to ensure appropriate content. Our staff does not correct grammar or spelling.

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 Memories & Condolences
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January 8, 2020
Jim was a magnificent balance of head and heart; brilliant, generous, brave, inclusive, imaginative, perceptive, adventurous to a fault, and astonishingly accomplished and skillful, more in the manner of someone born in an earlier age. He seemed to be able to cook/drive/train/build/figure out anything.

When we met, I was 17 and he was 18. I remember instantly thinking that he must be the one of the wittiest and most interesting people on earth. He was marvelously quick, entertaining and quotable.

Once while we were driving in north-central Kansas, he observed, "This would be a great place to find a golden eagle". A second later we crested a hill and flushed a golden eagle feasting on a jackrabbit. Not missing a beat, Jim turned to me and said, "This would be a great place to find a million dollars."

It's a silly story about someone so important to me, but it makes me happy to remember his keen love of nature, his enthusiasm and optimism, and the humor that endeared us all to him so deeply.

I send my most profound sympathy to Elisabeth, Bill, Jacob and the rest of Jim's family and close friends. I know he gave his heart and soul to you all, and to Life itself. Godspeed, dear Jim!
January 2, 2020
I'm saddened to learn of Jim's passing.
I hadn't seen him for over forty years, but I'm pleased to have been among his large circle of friends during his years at Emporia State University in the 70s. While some of us were thinkers or dreamers, I'll always remember Jim as a doer. Whether sharing a meal with friends, hiking around Lyon County on a freezing Christmas bird count, or tramping in the Flint Hills looking for lizards on a spring afternoon, Jim was always in the thick of the action.
He was a brilliant scholar, a thoughtful friend, a Renaissance man.
Condolences to his family and to all who knew him. The angels are sure to enjoy his company.
December 31, 2019
I met Jim in mid-1978 when my colleague announced that his friend from the US would be arriving to join our sojourn into Queensland chasing elusive birds later in the year. Shortly after we had the call that Jim's plane had arrived and he was somewhat puzzled as to his location. Apparently, on arrival in Sydney a fellow passenger, one Delilah - from memory, had offered him a shared taxi into the city. When asked to describe his current whereabouts he described a small park with a large spherical fountain at its centre. Hmm, Houston we have a problem

Racing up to Kings Cross from the other end of William Street we found him comfortably stretched out, snoozing, on a bench with his worldly possessions piled high about him waiting for any light-fingered person to help themselves. He was rescued and taken immediately under our control.

From then on we all found a great friendship during field research and at other times when we met. Tall tales, but true, were garnished from our several travels. Jim, as previously mentioned, was an excellent field companion ready to take over the kitchen duties with no fuss and a lot of expertise. Corn beef and cabbage cooked, in a disused cow shed, on a small gas fire in a cleaned metal bucket is one fond memory we all share. Of an evening, or while driving extended distances, we often joined in on homespun songs rendered at high volume and of dubious quality. Anyone who has experienced these singalongs will totally understand.

So, when a call came from Jim, we were only too happy to oblige and assist, whether it be counting diurnal birds or spotlighting nocturnal mammals we were there in the thick of it.

Sadly, he will be missed.

Vale James, Jim, Jimmy or especially LJS [Little Jimmy Shields}
December 31, 2019
Rest in peace Jim. I will always be grateful for the clever way you secretly set up a blind date with your housemate. Eric and I will soon be celebrating our 35th wedding anniversary thanks to you. Sincere condolences to your family.
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